Kerry McDonald

Kerry McDonald

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Kerry McDonald is a Senior Contributor for Intellectual Takeout. She has a B.A. in economics from Bowdoin College and a Master’s degree in education policy from Harvard University. She lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts and writes about education choice, parental empowerment, homeschooling, and self-directed learning. Follow her on Facebook, Twitter, and at her blog, Whole Family Learning.

Recent blog posts by this author

Stop Patronizing Parents’ School Choice Decisions, Please

Whenever we engage in discussions around school choice (charter schools, vouchers, and so on), it’s important to remember the origins of the mass schooling apparatus. In the mid-19th century when the first compulsory schooling statutes took hold--...

How Facebook and Netflix Are Disrupting the Education Status Quo

Despite cries against the “corporatization of public schools,” the reality is that the private sector is injecting public education with much-needed innovation. Stuck in a 19th century factory model, mass schooling needs a 21st century makeover....

Do Schools Really Need More Money?

A common chorus of if/then statements dominates most contemporary discussions of education reform: If schools had more money, then they would do better at educating kids. If teachers were paid more money, then they would do better at educating kids...

'Summer Slide' Solutions Focus on the Wrong Problem

Now that schools are out across the country, headlines abound regarding the seemingly inevitable summer learning loss, or “summer slide.” The National Summer Learning Association, which promotes summer programming, particularly for...

Homeschool is Booming, New Study Shows

A report issued this week by The Pioneer Institute, a Boston-based a public policy think tank, sheds light on the rapid growth and diversity of the U.S. homeschooling population. Co-authored by William Heuer and William Donovan, the comprehensive...

Why Your Kids Should Avoid Summer Reading Programs

Libraries are ideal examples of local, self-directed learning hubs that support all members of a community in learning naturally, without coercion. Late-nineteenth century steel magnate, Andrew Carnegie, who created many of the first public...

New PBS Documentary on Education in America is Creating a Stir

This spring, PBS has been airing a three-part documentary series, "School, Inc.", spotlighting some of the successes of education choice and free-market schooling options around the world. "School, Inc." is the brainchild of Andrew Coulson, an...

Less Schooling, More Apprenticeships

Apprenticeships first appeared in the later Middle Ages as an opportunity for young people, usually between the ages of 10 and 15, to gain practical skills and on-the-job training from a master craftsman. These adolescent apprentices came of age...

Is School Driving Kids Crazy (Literally)?

May can be a particularly dangerous month for schoolchildren. According to 13 years of recent data collected on mental health emergency room visits at Connecticut Children's Mental Health Center in Hartford, May typically has the most. Under...

Teacher Licensure Laws Are Keeping Some of America’s Top Educators Out of Schools

My homeschooled children take weekly math classes with a gifted teacher who has been teaching math to kids for more than 30 years from her cozy city home. After receiving undergraduate and graduate degrees in mathematics from the Massachusetts...

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